Once I got started with The Protector, I devoured it. This was one of the many books I have bought recently at library book sales. Kudos to my public libraries for hosting two sales this summer!
In this novel, Dee Henderson continues the story of the O’Malley siblings focusing on Jack in this story. He’s a firefighter in a department where an arsonist keeps acting. There is a strong belief that Jack or those close to him are a common link to the arsonist’s actions, which seem to be saying something about the recent departmental cuts. Mingled in the arson mystery is a budding romance between Jack and another firefighter with a horrific past of her own. At the heart of the story is the question “Who is Jesus?”
I probably shouldn’t have jumped into this story mid-series. While I don’t know if the plot follows the other books in the series, but the book is written as if you already know the characters. Thankfully there are a few clues throughout the book that fill in details about how the characters connect. It did leave me wanting to read the others so I could learn more of the backstory.
While I did appreciate the fact that Jack came to believe in Jesus and accepted him for who he was, I felt that part was cheapened a bit by the romance. There was one moment where she seemed to care about his eternal destination, but it felt that the female character was mostly waiting for Jack to believe the same as she so that they could be together. The topic of unequally yoked dating is messier than I might like it to be though. I am appreciative that Henderson included this internal debate for the female character.
I’d recommend this book to pretty much anyone. It may be more appealing to female adults, but c’mon guys, it has a firefighter as a main character. The story has bits of romance, mystery, and action.